2018 Suburban Handicap Contenders & Odds at Belmont Park

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NYRA Press Release | OTB Writer

Last year's Belmont Stakes hero Tapwrit will make his graded stakes return as part of a field of 11 in the Grade 2, $700,000 Suburban Handicap on Saturday at Belmont Park.

The 132nd running of the Suburban Handicap is Race 9 with an approximate post time of 6:18 p.m. ET on Saturday's 11-race Stars & Stripes live racing program.

2018 Suburban Handicap Odds & Entries

Race 9 on Belmont Park's Saturday card with a Post Time of 6:18 PM

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Name Changer 30-1 Luis Saez Alan Goldberg
2 War Story 5-1 Javier Castellano Jorge Navarro
3 Zanotti 20-1 Junior Alvarado Juan Guerrero
4 Tapwrit 7-2 Jose Ortiz Todd Pletcher
5 Dr. Dorr 3-1 Joseph Talamo Bob Baffert
6 Discreet Lover 20-1 Manuel Franco Uriah St. Lewis
7 Take Your Guns 8-1 Joel Rosario Chad Brown
8 Hoppertunity 9-2 Flavien Prat Bob Baffert
9 Sorry Erik 30-1 Kent Desormeaux J. Desormeaux
10 Diversify 6-1 Irad Ortiz, Jr. Richard Violette, Jr.
11 The Lieutenant 20-1 John Velazquez Michael McCarthy

Tapwrit, a 4-year-old colt by Tapit for trainer Todd Pletcher, will be making his second start of the year following a third-place finish in his seasonal bow, a loaded optional claiming contest on June 3, where he finished 1 ¼ lengths behind Grade 3 winner Timeline.

In 2017, Tapwrit recorded a victory in the Grade 2 Tampa Bay Derby in March of his 3-year-old season before competing in the first and final legs of the Triple Crown, capped by his two-length victory over Irish War Cry in the Belmont Stakes. Owned by Eclipse Thoroughbreds, Robert LaPenta, Bridlewood Farm, Gainsway Stable, and Whisper Hill Farm, Tapwrit was pointed to the Grade 1 Travers 11 weeks later at Saratoga Race Course, where he finished fourth, and was then tabled for the remainder of the year.

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"The thought process after the Travers last year was that he needed some time off," said Pletcher. "He shed a frog in that race and it took a while for him to get healed up, so we purposely gave him a little extra time with the idea that we wanted to have a fresh horse for the summer and hopefully the fall. So far, it's coming together."

Tapwrit will be ridden by Jose Ortiz from post 4.

Among those leading the challenge are a pair from California-based Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert in Hoppertunity and Dr. Dorr.

Hoppertunity is a perfect 2-for-2 at Belmont, beginning with a half-length win in the 2016 Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup and continuing last time out with a 2 ¼-length score in the 1 ½-mile Grade 2 Brooklyn on Belmont Stakes Day.

Owned by Karl Watson, Mike Pegram, and Paul Weitman, the 7-year-old son of Any Given Saturday owns a 9-7-5 record from 32 lifetime starts for earnings of $4,646,625 through five seasons of racing, including back-to-back victories in the Grade 2 San Antonio in 2016-17 and a half-length win in the 2014 Grade 1 Clark Handicap.

"He loves Belmont and he likes a mile and a quarter. He keeps going at a mile and a quarter," said Baffert. "It's coming back a little bit quick for him, but he's doing well so he's shipping back again. It's a big race. He gives you everything he has. He runs every time. He's just a solid racehorse."

Dr. Dorr, a speedy 5-year-old Lookin at Lucky gelding, is exiting a runner-up finish to Santa Anita Handicap winner Accelerate in the Grade 1 Gold Cup at Santa Anita on May 26.

"As soon as we stretched him out, he's gotten to be a better horse," Baffert said of Dr. Dorr, who is cross-entered in Friday's Grade 3 Cornhusker Handicap at Prairie Meadows. "A mile and a quarter might be a little far with him, but it depends on the pace. He's doing well. A big field usually means it's pretty evenly matched and they have two different styles. They're both training well, they shipped well - all is well. If we can just run 1-2, it'd be perfect."

Hoppertunity drew post 8 and will have the services of his regular jockey, Flavian Prat. Dr. Dorr will leave from post 5 with Joe Talamo aboard.

Rounding out the field for the Suburban are Lauren Evans and Ralph M. Evans' 2017 Jockey Club Gold Cup hero Diversify, exiting a hard-fought win in the Commentator for New York-breds on May 28; The Lieutenant, a 5-year-old half-brother to Triple Crown victor Justify and making his first start on the East Coast following a one-length win in the Grade 3 All American over Golden Gate's Tapeta course; hard-knocking multiple stakes winner War Story; Name Changer; Zanotti; Discreet Lover; Take Your Guns; and Sorry Erik.

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